Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Glass two-handled bottle

Early Imperial, Julio-Claudian
1st half of 1st century A.D.
Glass; blown in a four-part mold
H.: 3 9/16 in. (9.1 cm)
Credit Line:
Smith Fund, 1913
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 171
Translucent cobalt blue, with handles in opaque white.
Rim folded out, round, and pressed into flaring mouth; cylindrical, slightly concave neck, with horizontal indented band around base; convex sloping shoulder; cylindrical body with recessed central panel, then cup-shaped below; low circular base with rounded edge and flat bottom; two rod handles applied to shoulder in large round pads, drawn up in a curving loop, and pressed onto top of neck and underside of rim. Three mold seams run from lower neck, across shoulder, and down sides to top of prominent horizontal ridge; a separate cup-shaped section forms the lower body and base.
Decoration in three registers: on shoulder, downturned tongues in raised outline, interspersed at bottom with pointed darts, with two horizontal raised ridges below; on body, central panel divided into three sections by a vertical thrysos-like staff or rod, with bud-like knobs on each end, floral sprays shoot out horizontally from each staff in symmetrical but different designs of ivy, vines, and laurel with berries, with a plain raised band below expanding outwards to prominent horizontal ridge; above the base, a frieze of twenty-four upturned tongues in raised outline, interspersed at top with pointed darts; on bottom, three raised concentric circles, decreasing in thickness towards center, and central small knob (inner two circles and knob blurred).
Broken and cracked, with most of rim, top of neck, and one handle missing; some dulling and slight pitting, thick creamy brown weathering on neck and handles and iridescence on body.

Blue, Sidonian jug with two white handles.
Said to be from Scythopolis (Beit She'an, Israel)

Richter, Gisela M. A. 1914. "Department of Classical Art Accessions of 1913: Jewelry and Glass." Bulletin of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 9 (12): pp. 258-259.

Harden, Donald Benjamin. 1944–1945. "Two Tomb-Groups of the First Century A.D. from Yahmour, Syria, and a Supplement to the List of Roman-Syrian Glasses with Mould-Blown Inscriptions." Syria, 24: no. 2h, p. 85.

Stern, E. Marianne. 1995. Roman Mold-Blown Glass: The First through Sixth Centuries. p. 167 n. 3a, Rome: L'Erma di Bretschneider.

Related Objects

Glass jug

Date: late 1st–2nd century A.D. Medium: Glass Accession: 81.10.13 On view in:Gallery 171

Glass jug

Date: 1st half of 1st century A.D. Medium: Glass Accession: 17.194.226 On view in:Gallery 166

Glass bottle with handles

Date: 4th–5th century A.D. Medium: Glass Accession: X.21.171 On view in:Gallery 169

Glass bottle in the shape of an animal

Date: ca. 3rd century A.D. Medium: Glass Accession: X.21.182 On view in:Gallery 171

Glass bottle with three feet

Date: ca. 4th century A.D. Medium: Glass Accession: X.21.180 On view in:Gallery 171